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06/19/2006: "career idea"

Way back, I mentioned about applying to a newly-vacated position as an IRAP ITA. (I'd link the post, but I'm pretty sure it got vapourized along with this site's server.) I did apply to that position, but never heard back.

Well, more recently, I heard that the OTHER IRAP ITA that covers this area has taken an assignment in B.C. for "a year or two". That leaves this area very much under-serviced. Although I'd love to apply for the job again, there's no point in getting shot down twice for the same thing. So I'm going to take a different approach.

It's a two-pronged approach, actually. First, I'm going to contact the ITA that will be picking up the slack for this area. At some point in the future I will have some down time again, and I will be asking if I can use that time to shadow him for a day or two (or more). That way I'll get to really see what goes on in that position, and determine if it's a good fit or not.

Concurrently, I'm going to see if I can contact whomever would be the boss of all the different ITAs across Canada. I will introduce myself, let them know what my experience and future school plans are, and ask if there is a possibility of starting up an ITA intern program. As neither ITA position has been filled, it's obvious that they're having trouble finding people with the experience and/or education that they want. On the assumption that my background is entirely suitable and that I simply lack a few other skills, I'd give them the opportunity to take me on and shape me into what they want an ITA to be. My Master's program should fit very well into it all, as it deals directly with innovation, business, and managing technology.

Is this an ambitious plan? You bet. Is it long-term? Yes again. Is it something I should do? I don't see any reason why I shouldn't pursue this. I'll either find out that I don't want to be an IRAP flunky, discover that they simply don't want to try something new in order to recruit me, have everything work out better than my wildest dreams, or something in between. As cornball as it sounds, I can't fail if I don't try.

So - anyone know anyone working at the National Research Council that could give me a lead or two?

Replies: 2 Comments

on Wednesday, June 21st, roberthahn said

um, what's an IRAP ITA again?


on Wednesday, June 21st, mr.ska said

An IRAP ITA is someone that helps SMEs (Small to Medium-sized Enterprises [businesses, not spaceships]) get grants towards commercializing ressearch and technology.

But if it's what NRC IRAP ITA stands for you're wanting, that would be "National Research Council Industrial Research Assistance Program Industrial Technical Advisor". They don't hand out business cards, they hand out business floss.

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